Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Sen. Cantwell clarifies her position on Iraq

Senator Maria Cantwell yesterday clarified her position on the Iraq conflict, reaffirming her previous stance that 2006 must be a year of transition and that we need to begin the process of bringing American troops home.

Here's what the Senator said yesterday:
If the Congress knew then, what we know today, even the Republican leadership would not have brought it to a vote.

If the Bush Administration had done the hard work of building an international coalition to really contain Saddam, there would have been no vote.

If I knew then everything that I know today and the Republican leadership still brought it up for a vote, I would have voted no.

While mistakes were made in the way Bush took us to war, the Republican led Congress has not done its job of providing aggressive oversight of the Iraq war. In the days ahead, the Congress must use the power of the purse to hold the Bush Administration accountable for more progress towards beginning to bring our troops home this year.

We will always make sure our troops have everything they need to do their jobs well, but we will look at other cost cutting measures.

I am for changing the course in Iraq , my opponent is for staying the course. I oppose permanent bases in Iraq , my opponent does not share that belief. We do have different views of where to go next in Iraq.

The Iraqis must take over responsibility for their own security this year.
Some months ago I wrote here of our concern that the Senator was not taking a clearer position on Iraq, that it was hurting her campaign, and expressing the hope that her position would evolve. And indeed, it has evolved - bit by bit.

With this latest statement, Cantwell's position on Iraq has improved over the last year or so from being murky and unknown to clear, sharp, and consistent with what the majority of the American people believe.

We applaud Senator Cantwell for reinforcing her position and making it absolutely crystal clear that she does not agree with the way the Bush administration is (mis)managing our incursion into Iraq.

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